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Einfühlung
Algoma University Fine Arts Thesis Exhibition

April 16th to May 17th, 2015

Opening reception Thursday, April 16th at 7 pm, at the Art Gallery of Algoma

Participating Artists

Frank Belieu
Sarah Byrne
Mary Dawson
Burgandy Hill
Rhiannon Lanosky-MacFarlane
Julia Mancuso
Grace Worrell

A hallmark of meaningful   university education is the manner in which the subjectivity of the individual is incrementally affected by interactions with larger groups, ideas and social interactions, even to the point of the transformation of character and the broadening of sensibility.

Every year, the BFA thesis group elicits reflection on this notion, given that it is always apparent that although the students retain their individuality, they are really not the same people that they were in first year. They are better, more capable, more mature and more engaged with substantive and meaningful ways to navigate through the world.

For the group this year, a principle agent of transformation has been the manner in which each person developed an acute affinity for the phenomena that motivate them. Call it a deep empathy or Einfülung, the term invented by German philosopher Robert Vischer to describe a “ feeing into” or “in-feeling”, especially in relation to art and architecture.

It is stated that empathy is not a passive, uncritical process, but that it deals with the critical choice of the object of empathy and with an active approach to the perceived feelings and appearances. In addition to this cognitive aspect, empathy may also contribute to the analytical and valuable introspection. Furthermore, empathy allows us to connect the analysis of the facts within a personal narrative and understanding of individual identity in historical understanding.

– Magdalena Nowak, The Complicated History of Einfühlung

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